It is generally believed that during economic decisions, striatal neurons represent the values associated with different actions. This hypothesis is based on studies, in which the activity of striatal neurons was measured while the subject was learning to prefer the more rewarding action. Here we show that these publications are subject to at least one of two critical confounds. First, we show that even weak temporal correlations in the neuronal data may result in an erroneous identification of action-value representations. Second, we show that experiments and analyses designed to dissociate action-value representation from the representation of other decision variables cannot do so. We suggest solutions to identifying action-value representation that are not subject to these confounds. Applying one solution to previously identified action-value neurons in the basal ganglia we fail to detect action-value representations. We conclude that the claim that striatal neurons encode action-values must await new experiments and analyses.
The data of the basal ganglia recordings from (Ito and Doya 2009) is available online at https://groups.oist.jp/ncu/data and was analyzed with permission from the authors. Motor cortex data (recorded by Oren Peles in Eilon Vaadia's lab) and auditory cortex data (taken from the recordings in (Hershenhoren, Taaseh, Antunes, & Nelken, 2014)) is available at https://github.com/lotem-elber/striatal-action-value-neurons-reconsidered-codes (Elber-Dorozko & Loewenstein 2018). The custom MATLAB scripts used to create simulated neurons and to analyze simulated and recorded neurons are also available at https://github.com/lotem-elber/striatal-action-value-neurons-reconsidered-codes.
Validation of decision-making models and analysis of decision variables in the rat basal ganglia.Publicly available at webpage of lab.
- Yonatan Loewenstein
- Yonatan Loewenstein
- Yonatan Loewenstein
The funders had no role in study design, data collection and interpretation, or the decision to submit the work for publication.
- Timothy E Behrens, University of Oxford, United Kingdom
© 2018, Elber-Dorozko & Loewenstein
This article is distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License permitting unrestricted use and redistribution provided that the original author and source are credited.
Resolving trajectories of axonal pathways in the primate prefrontal cortex remains crucial to gain insights into higher-order processes of cognition and emotion, which requires a comprehensive map of axonal projections linking demarcated subdivisions of prefrontal cortex and the rest of brain. Here, we report a mesoscale excitatory projectome issued from the ventrolateral prefrontal cortex (vlPFC) to the entire macaque brain by using viral-based genetic axonal tracing in tandem with high-throughput serial two-photon tomography, which demonstrated prominent monosynaptic projections to other prefrontal areas, temporal, limbic, and subcortical areas, relatively weak projections to parietal and insular regions but no projections directly to the occipital lobe. In a common 3D space, we quantitatively validated an atlas of diffusion tractography-derived vlPFC connections with correlative green fluorescent protein-labeled axonal tracing, and observed generally good agreement except a major difference in the posterior projections of inferior fronto-occipital fasciculus. These findings raise an intriguing question as to how neural information passes along long-range association fiber bundles in macaque brains, and call for the caution of using diffusion tractography to map the wiring diagram of brain circuits.
Background: Deep Brain Stimulation (DBS) electrode implant trajectories are stereotactically defined using preoperative neuroimaging. To validate the correct trajectory, microelectrode recordings (MER) or local field potential recordings (LFP) can be used to extend neuroanatomical information (defined by magnetic resonance imaging) with neurophysiological activity patterns recorded from micro- and macroelectrodes probing the surgical target site. Currently, these two sources of information (imaging vs. electrophysiology) are analyzed separately, while means to fuse both data streams have not been introduced.
Methods: Here we present a tool that integrates resources from stereotactic planning, neuroimaging, MER and high-resolution atlas data to create a real-time visualization of the implant trajectory. We validate the tool based on a retrospective cohort of DBS patients (𝑁 = 52) offline and present single use cases of the real-time platform. Results: We establish an open-source software tool for multimodal data visualization and analysis during DBS surgery. We show a general correspondence between features derived from neuroimaging and electrophysiological recordings and present examples that demonstrate the functionality of the tool.
Conclusions: This novel software platform for multimodal data visualization and analysis bears translational potential to improve accuracy of DBS surgery. The toolbox is made openly available and is extendable to integrate with additional software packages.
Funding: Deutsche Forschungsgesellschaft (410169619, 424778381), Deutsches Zentrum für Luftund Raumfahrt (DynaSti), National Institutes of Health (2R01 MH113929), Foundation for OCD Research (FFOR).